This is the new 2020 Ducati livery with which Andrea Dovizioso and Danilo Petrucci will attempt to end Marc Marquez and Honda's MotoGP reign.

The factory riders were joined by Ducati Motor CEO Claudio Domenicali and Ducati Corse general manager Gigi Dall’Igna for the unveiling of the team's latest colours, during a Thursday evening presentation at Palazzo Re Enzo, Bologna.

“We already left the 2019 season behind, a year that saw us confirmed as runner-up in the riders’ standings for the third time in a row with Andrea," said Dall’Igna.

"Dovizioso scored nine podiums and two incredible victories. At the same time, Danilo gave us incredible emotions with his victory in Mugello, which is a GP that we had won in the last three years.

"Still, we can’t say that we are completely satisfied as our ultimate goal remains the same: winning the championship title.

"2020 will be even more intense and demanding with 20 races scheduled in the calendar, and our rivals will be even more competitive. That is why we all need to increase our commitment.

"For this reason, we have been working harder during the winter to offer to Andrea and Danilo a Desmosedici GP20 bike that will allow them to become leading contenders in all races and all conditions."

Although title runner-up for the past three seasons and one of the few to have beaten Marquez in final lap showdowns, Dovi's victory tally has decreased from 6 to 4 to 2 over the same period and he was 151 points adrift of the Spaniard by the end of last year's championship.

And while Marquez ironed out many of his previous mistakes to deliver a record-breaking season, Ducati's top speed dominance also came under serious threat from Honda in 2019 (despite a new all-time top seed record of 356.7km/h (221.6mph) at Mugello).

Ducati engineers are thus under pressure to respond to the horsepower challenge but especially, with no guarantee of gaining significant time on the straights anymore, improve the Desmosedici's long-standing turning difficulties for 2020. As such, Dall’Igna confirmed significant chassis and engine upgrades are being evaluated in the winter tests.

Meanwhile, after listing the technical developments transferred from MotoGP to the new Panigale V4 road bike, Domenicali highlighted the fact that – while there are now three European factories in MotoGP - only one of them has been able to win races (plus the 2007 world title with Casey Stoner).

"An engine that features a counter-rotating crankshaft, a spine and slice traction control, an efficient aerodynamic fairing that includes aerofoils are just a few of the elements deriving from the skilful work done by Gigi and his crew in MotoGP," Domenicali said of the Panigale.

"We are incredibly proud, not just because Ducati is the only Italian company, but also the only European company able to win races in MotoGP since the beginning of the Championship in 2002.

"I'm also very pleased that when we entered the championship in 2003, actually we were on the podium in the first race and made pole position in race number three. And won race number six, which was a fantastic achievement. Also this speaks loudly about how serious this company is about racing, in the past and still today."

While the MotoGP team is once again officially titled 'Mission Winnow Ducati', the Philip Morris initiative was dropped from the Desmosedici after the early rounds of last year and it remains to be seen how often it will be present in 2020.

Otherwise, the latest 'Ducati red' livery features more black and chromed details compared to last year.

As usual with early pre-season launches, the machine on display is likely to be this year's livery on last year's bike.

Further new parts (including the latest wings) still to be tried at next month's Sepang and Losail tests - when Dovizioso, 33, will be preparing to start his 13th MotoGP season and eighth year at Ducati.

“2019 was interesting and made us understand a few aspects that will help us to improve and grow in 2020," Dovizioso said. "Last year we finished as runner-up for the third consecutive time behind Marc Marquez, a rider that for sure made the difference last year, but we also did our best managing well our potential.

"Every year has its own story, and it is not easy to predict what will happen in 2020. Our goal is clear; we want to challenge for the title again. Both Ducati and I are working hard to be back stronger than ever before.

"Compared to last year, I expect to find more competitive rivals, but we have also grown a lot, and I am confident that we will be able to continue with our positive trend."

Team-mate Petrucci, 29, starts his second season as a factory team rider and sixth year at Ducati.

The Italian claimed an emotional debut MotoGP victory at Mugello, clearing the way for a one-year contract extension, but was absent from the podium after Catalunya in June and eventually slipped to sixth place in the world championship.

“2019 was positive for me, despite a few difficulties towards the end of the year," Petrucci said. "It was my best season in MotoGP in terms of results. I took my first win in Mugello in a fantastic race in front of my home crowd and all the Ducati fans.

"This result boosts my confidence and motivates me to improve even more this year. I know our rivals will be back stronger this year, but that counts for me too. I have been improving and growing each season, and this year I want to confirm my results and make further steps forward compared to last year."

As well as Dovizioso and Petrucci, Pramac riders Jack Miller and Francesco Bagnaia will also have the latest GP20 machines this season, while Avintia riders Johann Zarco and Tito Rabat use last year's GP19s.

The Ducati and Pramac riders are out of contract at the end of this year, with Miller and Zarco already making their factory team aspirations clear for 2021.

Dovizioso and Petrucci will ride in their 2020 Ducati colours for the first time at Sepang from February 7-9, with test rider Michele Pirro also on track for the preceding Shakedown.

 

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